LA HACIENDA

La Hacienda is a project in motion - that is to say it is a work in progress - still being built.

The sight was chosen while out mustering "Rouge" cattle one day back in 2004 and as I update this it is already 2018.

The excavator was here for over two weeks hammering rocks and scraping down earth to make a ‘pad’.

The pad was then compacted down for a further two weeks until it reached 14 feet in height and ... 

Before the foundations even started to be sighted out

Concrete poured securing steel rods into the pad to assist in less movement all-round, and at this stage too the Plumber came out to position all the piping that he needed too …

… before the final slab was laid and kept wet for a number of days then, 

… the bricks are brought in and positioned in place for the Bricklayers  

… then the Bricklayers would start their construction …

With some helping out too ... then 

... and that is that same spot now in 2018.

The home is very simple in design with Besar Block core filled with concrete and a steel roof, as we have a big Termite problem in this country so unfortunately the less wood the better. 

The building faces directly North - with very large windows - it's a Solar Passive home.  The heat is drawn in through the large windows and kept there while the sun heats up the concrete floors, which means that throughout our winter months we have a constant warm temperature inside and no need for any outside heating although we do have gas which we use to cook with.  

In Summer we retreat to the veranda on the Southern side which is lovely and cool at that time of year and which too has morphed since 2013 the wonderful breeze, however that runs through the veranda has not changed at all. 

We are not part of any "Grid" system and have no phone lines.  We generate all our own power with Solar Panels and an old diesel Generator on overcast days.

All our water is contained in water tanks; the water is collected from the runoff from the house roof as well as the - feed shed roof.  We have an annual rainfall of only 24 inches which we may get over a year …

… or all in one or two months which can be devastating as the country is very hard - sedimentary rock which they call "Traprock" here, dry and poor with no humus or any plant matter to say the least, and at those times we get an exceedingly amount of water that runs off this country unfortunately.

Since starting this blog in 2013 there has been a few completions done to the Homestead ...

... yes we have finally painted – “Light Terracotta” - and ...

... painted it we sure have. 

It is interesting to see how the Homestead now seems to sit down into the Landscape ... 

... it appears now to be part of the Landscape which is just delightful as you catch glimpses of it whilst out at work.

The retainer walls are still to come along with all that, road base for the drive. I am thrilled to say though, that I now .... 

... have a beautiful old 'Sunshine' house gate which ... 

... I have painted my favourite colour - "Custard Puff" - Yellow. And I am also hoping for that 'Road Base' to go around all the little gardens too.  That beautifully inspired Islamic influenced dry garden that I can envision here is somewhere too, still on it's way.

Although I am pleased to say that the Lemon and Orange trees along ...

.... with the little Cumquat trees are doing wonderfully.  The Pomegranate trees are to come along with the Crepe Mertyls, Wisteria, Star Jasmine and a couple of David Austin Roses, a Washingtonia Palm or two to complete the picture are still on the “Drawing/Wish List”.   

Even my little gardens have grown ...

...since 2013 which were initially made from recycled old diesel storage tank as well as a number of oil Drums that were cut in half as well.

I am still growing Salad Greens and ... 

... a number of flowering plants for colour. Depending on what time of year it is and the water availability.